Sweet clover is fine for fresh grazing, but can mold easily in hay and become toxic. Each goat had gained 10 - 20 lbs. For that reason, Alfalfa hay is a … Hay for sheep and goats should contain more protein and be more digestible than hay produced for the dry, pregnant cow. Make certain the feed does not contain urea because it is toxic to goats. In all cases, it is your responsibility to obtain veterinary services and advice before using any of the information provided in these articles. Goats are choosy and will decline to drink foul water. Already a Member? Grass hay provides a moderate amount of protein and energy for the goat diet. Humid summer weather conditions in some years encourage the growth of the toxic fungus ergot on grass seed heads. Today we are going to talk about the best antibiotics for goats, as well as the best pain medication for goats. Much of the nutrition in the grass is preserved in the hay, and it makes great feed for goats. Producers insistant on feeding large quantities of grain must provide a loose mineral containing a 2:1 ratio of calcium to phosphorus on a free-choice basis.The key is that ample protein, hay, forage, and minerals must be fed to goats in a BALANCED ratio. If fiber levels are high, digestibility will be low, even if the protein level is high. Grasses are the third link in this chain, but the key to grasses maintaining good nutritional levels is to graze them when they are young, succulent, and very digestible. Synchronizing Goat Breeding with Sunn Hemp Read all of Eric's MOTHER EARTH NEWS posts here. Providing goats with a combination of alfalfa and grass hays along with the proper grain mix will bring the protein level up and insure that there is adequate roughage in the diet to stimulate the digestive action of the goat's rumen. Legume hays, such as clover and alfalfa, usually have more protein, vitamins, and minerals, particularly calcium, than grass hays. As a general rule, stemmier hays have less nutritional value than leafy hays. I hit upon the idea when one of our nannies presented us with four bouncing baby kids. For example, dairy and dairy-cross animals whose focus is heavy milk production have somewhat different nutritional requirements. Goats require additional hay, which is roughage, for their rumen to function properly. The rumen is the first stomach compartment (rich in live bacteria) that begins to digest the fiber. Overall hay quality is much more important than the specific type of hay. If first cut hay is mowed at the pre-bloom stage, the stems will not be coarse and the nutritive value will be high. All artwork and graphics ©, Registry of Myotonics, Tennessee Meat Goats™ and TexMasters™. I think I need to look into using this for my goats too. The simple feeder shown here is easy to make, easy to use, and holds enough hay to feed 8 to 15 goats … Since dietary needs vary from goat to goat and from season to season, when it comes to concentrates, the eye of the master fattens the goat. If you have to cut corners, save your highest quality hay for your gestating does, as their systems will need the biggest boost. Storey's Guide To Raising Poultry, 4Th Edition, Mother Earth News: Build It Yourself E-Book, Pre-Fabricated, Gambrel Roof A-Frame Plan, Natural Cold Storage: Fresh Food in Winter, Keeping Crops Cool During Hot Weather: 13 Ways to Beat the Heat, Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price. The quality of hay, for example, varies greatly, based on how mature it was when it was cut and baled. Immature grass hay or leafy alfalfa is usually the best feed for sheep. Very coarse hay or forage is not readily digestible by goats, so they prefer not to eat them. Bottom line, this is a good sturdy goat hay feeder that holds up well with my bigger bucks or goats with horns intact. Very coarse hay or forage is not readily digestible by goats, so they prefer not to eat them. Our best supplier in terms of hay quality switched entirely to the GMO variety; in 2014 we didn’t buy alfalfa hay at all as we couldn’t find an acceptable source. It’s the dried equivalent of what the animal would want to eat fresh. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. The goat's total diet should be 14-16% protein. Producers having problems with urinary calculi may be feeding the wrong mix of grains to goats. Alfalfa hay is really ideal. Many areas have poor quality or brackish water. Goats love to strew hay around, sleep in it, poop on it... in other words, they like to waste hay. Hay is grass that has been cut and dried, then baled or collected to use as animal feed. TENNESSEE MEAT GOAT ™ and TEXMASTER™ are Trademarks of Onion Creek Ranch . The short answer is GOOD hay. good hay is limited. Straw, by contrast, tends to be the cut & dried stem material of harvested grains (such as oats or wheat) which aren’t particularly palatable. Goats were made to bro… Short an animal on protein and milk production declines, regardless of energy intake. over the summer. Then they add a culture of Bacillus Subtillis and vacuum seal it into a 50-pound bag. All artwork and graphics © DTP, Ink and Onion Creek Ranch. Keep in mind that a 16% protein supplement fed along with an 8% protein forage will reduce the overall protein level below the percentage needed. Laminitis/founder often become chronic in goats who have been subjected to excessive feeding of grain and sudden ration changes. Lesson learned. Be prepared for hay waste -- goats like to eat some parts of the hay and let the rest drop out of their mouths. It’ll give you the best chance to inspect the hay and understand where it came from (for example, you can try to collect bales from area furthest from neighboring spray-happy commodity fields), and the price will be lower because the grower didn’t have to collect and store it. Here are some things we’ve learned to consider when sourcing hay for our herd. All information and photos copyright © Onion Creek Ranch and may not be used without express written permission of Onion Creek Ranch. Documentation and observations from two veterinarians proclaimed the goat herd on sunn hemp to out perform the goat herd on full feed but no sunn hemp. We’ll always wonder if and to what extent a batch of questionable hay that we bought in the brutal winter following the brutal drought of 2012 played a role in a subsequent miscarriage and other poor herd health. When given the chance, goats prefer to browse on shrub-like, broadleaf forbs over traditional pasture grasses. Very coarse hay or forage is not readily digestible by goats, so they prefer not to eat them. At MOTHER EARTH NEWS for 50 years and counting, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. Browse plants include brambles, shrubs, trees, and vines with woody stems. Nutritionally alfalfa is the same regardless of whether it is pellets, cubes, or hay, but goats really need the long stem forage, such as hay, to keep their rumen working. Browse plants include brambles, shrubs, trees, and vines with woody stems. Due to our area being deficient in calcium, I include alfalfa in my wethers' diets either in the form of alfalfa hay or alfalfa pellets, to provide them with the 2:1 calcium/phosphorus ratio they need. This varies depending on the maturity of the hay or alfalfa and the way that its cured and stored. Weeds do tend to appear in first-cut hay. All MOTHER EARTH NEWS community bloggers have agreed to follow our Best Blogging Practices, and they are responsible for the accuracy of their posts. Going online to forums or to contact other goat farmers will only get confusing in the long run. Storing your own hay also means you have control over conditions and don’t have to scramble to find more during winter, when prices may be higher, supplies more limited, and quality less certain. Wasted hay is wasted money on the farm and our goal is to waste as little money and hay for that matter as possible. . The milk molecule is built around protein. More digestible, a wide what cut of hay is best for goats of plants and hays will be,... Nutritional intake can also vary widely depending on the maturity of the information provided in these articles, we’ve our. Winter feed for your goats, we bought alfalfa hay is not enough here are some things what cut of hay is best for goats ve. 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